Author: Tina Bare

Leaving a Family Legacy of Generosity

by Ron Bare

My parents taught me to be generous. Throughout my childhood they instilled many values, both in speech and in action – but it was the “action” values that really remained. I don’t remember whether our house was always clean or whether my mom’s meals were always perfectly cooked. But I do remember that she was always feeding not only me, but all of my friends too. I remember my father faithfully tithing. My mom was also generous with her time, volunteering at church and a local thrift shop. I learned by watching her that generosity can be expressed in many forms and that family giving is hugely impactful.

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I believe many of us would love to leave legacies of a strong work ethic or faithfully tithing, similar to my parents. We all have a deep desire to impact those around us. So how do we do it?

Last month, we talked about six buckets of long-term goals. We focused on the giving bucket and about what it means to give out of our assets and accumulation. This takes intentional planning and a generous heart.

This month, we’re focused on the family goals bucket. Many of us have a desire within our hearts to support our children or grandchildren. This support comes in different forms depending on our values and lifestyle. We often begin with goals of helping our children financially. These goals typically involve helping with their education, first home, or leaving an inheritance.

In the same way that my parents taught me the many ways to be generous, I’d invite you to consider the many ways to handle family goals. Offering college support or leaving an inheritance aren’t the only ways to support your family. The values and wisdom you instill in your children and grandchildren around finances can be even more valuable than the finances themselves. One of my mentors, Ron Blue, stresses the importance of this concept in a quote he has been known to say, ” Pass on wisdom before wealth.”  Your children and grandchildren will continue to think of you after you’re gone. What do you hope comes to their mind? What did they see you model? How did you talk to them about money?

Maybe there are patterns you can establish, like giving first before paying your bills, that your children will pick up on. It could be valuable to also consider a fund that could be started to help fund the dreams and goals of the next generation, including helping them start a business, buy a home or even invest into their giving goals. Consider how your life experiences can be valuable to share. Simply inviting your children into some of your financial conversations can be invaluable. You’ve learned lessons through your successes and failures that have the potential to be a great resource to the next generation.

Part of the reason we encourage thinking about more than just giving financially to our family is because we know that without the values piece, sometimes more harm than good can happen. Instead of instilling a mindset of perseverance, sacrifice or hard work, financial blessings can create entitlement or dependence without wisdom.  At some point, you may have done “enough” financially for your family. This has to be a real consideration. You can still serve your family even if the answer for right now is ‘no.’ I have seen that entitlement and dependence are less likely to happen when we’re successful with passing on wisdom and values.

I have been blessed to have a wonderful mother and father. Not because our home was always perfect. Simply because I was taught important lessons about generosity, especially about finances. What are your children and grandchildren learning from you? Family goals are so valuable, yet can be approached in many ways. We’d love to hear about how you and your family creatively approach your family goals.

Join us next month for a conversation about our capital assets and investments and how they can shift the culture and influence the world for good.


Do You Believe You Can Change the World?

by Ron Bare

What would it take for you to believe that you could change the world? What if I proposed that it simply starts with intentionality and a generous heart? Would you believe me?

At Bare, we truly believe this. It takes commitment and planning, but when you’re ready, we’ll be right here to support you. Through intentional stewardship and extravagant giving, we help generous people shift the
culture and change the world for the glory of God.

Changing the world starts with changing your world. Last month, we talked about what it means to be faithful stewards of what God has given us. We must first define generosity, define enough, and then set financial goals.
Many of these financial goals are long-term goals – even lifetime goals. There are 6 main long term goals, or “buckets,” that we find most of our clients to
be pursuing.

The first bucket is financial independence or retirement. This bucket is focused on how much will be enough to meet their needs and accommodate their lifestyle after working full-time. The second bucket is debt elimination. This bucket is working toward paying off all debts and committing to a debt-free future. The third bucket is additional lifestyle goals. This bucket is planning a large one-time purchase, like a cabin or a beach house.

The fourth bucket is family goals. This bucket is considering how they’d like to support their children or grandchildren. The fifth bucket is centered around giving goals. This bucket begins to move beyond the 10% tithe principle into greater giving. The sixth bucket is new opportunities. This bucket is seeking new business or investment opportunities.

In our experience, our clients are typically pursuing goals in a few of these buckets.. We have walked with people from all walks of life and have been able to support them no matter the goal they are pursuing.

When a client defines ‘enough’ and accumulates ‘enough,’ the buckets of retirement and lifestyle goals become filled (see last month’s blog.) On top of that, when all debt is paid off, they find themselves looking at three full buckets! With these three full, the client gains freedom to explore the final three buckets with a different perspective. I like to call these final three buckets the impact buckets.

The first of the impact buckets is the giving bucket. The key theme of this bucket is the impact that intentional planning and giving can have on the world. When we move beyond simply what we need, we are able to consider eternal impact and our legacy.

Typically, the giving bucket begins with giving 10% of our income. When we are in a position to consider giving more than 10%, we begin to wonder what else we can support. We are no longer simply giving out of our income, but also giving out of our assets and accumulation. We begin to see problems around us and are able to give significantly toward their solutions, rather than simply supporting a good cause.

This requires intentional planning about allocating funds, whether to an organization you are passionate about or otherwise. We highly recommend setting up a donor advised fund, which is a tool to help you plan and manage your giving. This fund helps you maximize tax benefits and make a plan for your giving. I love what 1 Timothy 6:17-19 has to say about this. It paints a beautiful picture of extravagant giving and good works flowing together!

Do you believe you can change the world? If you take intentional time to plan and consider extravagant giving, I think you’ll be surprised at what happens. Next month, we’ll cover the family bucket, and how this bucket can be used to shift our culture and influence our world for good!

Implementing Faithful Living with Intentionality

by Ron Bare

It’s easy to talk the talk. But when it comes to walking the walk, that’s a little more difficult, isn’t it? We’ve all seen this in action. This is why it’s easy to say that we will be more mindful of our budget, but when we start to smell that coffee, the budget goes out the window. It’s why saying that we’re starting a diet is easy, but actually following through with the restrictions it brings is so difficult.

At Bare, we understand the importance of both talking about faithfulness and following through with it! We know it takes planning and intentionality to make this happen, and we want to equip you and your family with resources to be faithful.

But what does faithfulness mean? A simple google search shows ‘faithful’ to mean steadfast, or true to the facts. As we focus on our “Year of Faithfulness”, we’re praying that each staff member and client comes to understand faithfulness in a deeper manner and chooses to live that out personally. So far this year, we’ve defined faithfulness and shared some practical tips around faithful living. This month, we want to give you strategies to intentionally implement these principles.

These principles come from my learning over the last 30 years in financial advising combined with the study of God’s Word. His Word is steadfast and true; it is faithful!

I want to begin with the most important financial decision you get to make: deciding how much to give. I typically start by considering a 10% tithe. This is a biblical principle and I’ve found it to be a helpful starting point. From there, consider how you can be more generous each year. Set intentional generosity goals and work toward them. And remember, generosity is an overflow of the heart!

Second, consider defining ‘enough.’ Personally, I’ve set a budget that includes both necessary expenses and fun expenses, like traveling, eating out, and our family’s hobbies. This budget gives me an idea of just how much is enough. It protects against the danger of hoarding. Without this guardrail, we will all keep chasing more money, more traveling, more new cars, more, more, more.

Finally, I’d encourage you to set financial goals and invest with a specific personal goal in mind. This will help you determine how much to accumulate. Consider whether your investment decisions are in line with the personal goals you’ve set for yourself. What is needed to grow your business and make a bigger impact? Are you moving closer to or further from that? What are your retirement goals? What are your family goals? Consider your future goals and what decisions might need to be made now to make those things possible later.

Defining ‘enough’ for you and your family will be critical in this whole process. Once you are confident in having accumulated ‘enough’ to meet your financial goals, there are new things to consider! That stage of life is a beautiful time to increase your giving and invest capital in order to shift the culture and change the world for the glory of God. Stay tuned for next month’s blog as we will talk in more detail about this.

None of us can do this on our own. We each need people to walk alongside us as we make critical financial decisions and aim to glorify the Lord with what he has given to us.

Here at Bare, we’d love to walk with you on this journey. As we walk you through a holistic, biblical financial planning process, we will equip you with tools and resources to help guide your way. We’re here for the long haul.

If you’re interested in specific tools for living a God-honoring lifestyle, planning for kingdom giving, or saving and investing, reach out at barewealthadvisors.com. We’d love to connect with you and send these resources to you.

Living Faithfully – A Practical Guide

by Ron Bare

Without a doubt, my favorite moment when flying on a plane is the descent. We’re finally about to land at our destination, whether it is a beautiful beach, a tropical island, or majestic mountains. And every time, I am in awe at the landscape below me. The way that the mountains, forests, oceans, and cities weave together captures all my attention. It’s stunning.

But I soon start to wonder. How do you get down there? Where does that path lead? Are there waterfalls in that forest that I can’t see from up here? What kind of wildlife lives in those mountains? These questions can only be answered on the path, in the forest, in the mountains, on the ground.

Today I want to take you with me to the ground. Last month, we were on the plane, looking at the idea of faithfulness from 10,000 feet in the air – what it means and what things hinder it. But simply talking about faithfulness can leave us lingering with questions about what it truly looks like on the ground, in real life.

As we consider faithfulness practically, we have six big thoughts and then a few practical tips that we believe are beneficial.

First, remember that God owns everything, and we are simply stewards. When we understand that everything we have belongs to the Lord, our heart is naturally drawn toward gratitude and faithfulness.

Second, work is important! God has given each of us resources to manage and they cannot be managed without discipline. Resources will not grow overnight; we must work to increase and invest in them.

Third, find contentment in the time, talent, and treasure God has given to you. Contentment is hard, that’s just the reality of it. Yet when we become content with our resources, how much easier it is to be faithful! We’re not constantly longing for more, promising that when we get just a little bit more, then we will choose to be faithful.

Similarly, be generous with this time, talent, and treasure! Generosity is the overflow of a content heart. When we understand that nothing we have is truly ours and are not longing for more, we will be generous.

Next, grow what God has given to you! In the parable of the talents, we see the master (Jesus) pleased with those servants who have increased what he originally gave them. While the master is gone, the servants are working hard to invest and even double what the master has given them to manage.

Finally, transfer stewardship to the next steward coming after you! Think of the generations to come after you – what can you teach them about stewardship? What have you learned in your lifetime both from successes and mistakes that can be passed on? Are you investing your wisdom into your kids, grandkids, neighbors, friends at church, or employees?

As we consider what faithfulness looks like, we’ve found two key practices that help get our minds and hearts in the right place.

Studying God’s Word and specifically the passages related to money is a great place to start. There are so many passages, and we’ll list a few of them at the bottom of this post!

Additionally, we’d encourage you to begin each day with this prayer – “God, all I have is yours. What would you have me do with the time, talents and treasure that you have placed in my hands?” As you pray this prayer, consider your impressions. Write them down, share them with your spouse or trusted friends, and engage with what God might have you do.

What have you discovered in your time on the ground? What is God asking you to do with what He has entrusted to you?

Fun fact – there are over 2,300 passages relating to money in the Bible! Here are just a few passages to consider when studying what God’s word says about faithfulness, stewardship, and money.

  • I Timothy 6:17-19
  • Psalm 24:1
  • Jesus’ parables (about one third of them have to do with money)
    • Matthew 13:44-46
    • Matthew 25:14-30
    • Luke 12:13-21
    • Luke 18:10-14
    • Luke 16:1-13
  • 2 Corinthians chapters 8 and 9
  • Malachi chapter 3

Focusing on Faithfulness in 2024

by Ron Bare

I learned all about hard work growing up on a farm. I understood that the small,
unglamorous jobs had to be done. Yet this didn’t make my first job off the farm much easier. I
was working at a local lumber yard, and my job was to catch wood as it came through the
saw. Exciting, right? One day, my supervisor asked for someone to work outside to unload a
huge truck full of wood, and you better believe I was quick to volunteer! When I was done, no
one was around, so I went to find my supervisor to let him know. He was baffled. It was a
project he thought would take all day, and it had been done in just a few hours. He promoted
me on the spot, and I said goodbye to my lumber-catching role.

I was trusted with catching wood, and then I was trusted with unloading a truck, and
then I was trusted with even more responsibility. As I continued to prove faithful, I was
entrusted with more. And I believe this principle stands true spiritually as well. As Christians,
we are called to be faithful with what God has given us.

Jesus illustrates faithfulness in the parable of the talents – many of you have likely
heard this story found in Matthew 25. In this story, the master left town and entrusted his
possessions to three servants. Two servants invested what they had been given, making
double what they had received by the time the master returned. One servant buried what he
was given, fearful that he may lose it. The master was pleased with both servants who had
multiplied what they’d been given, and displeased with the other.

In this parable, we see the master, who represents Jesus, giving servants talents. After
he returns, he is pleased with those who have multiplied what he left them with. It all
belonged to him in the end; the servants were just stewarding what had been given to them.
Scriptures like Psalm 24:1 remind us of this very reality. All we have is God’s. And all of
these things we’ve been blessed with – finances, family, time, resources, etc. – we’re meant to
manage them in a way that honors Him.

What a tall task. And don’t overlook the fact that many temptations will arise,
encouraging you not to be faithful with your resources, and most of these dress themselves as
fear. We each have fears, especially when it comes to managing money. If I give some away,
will I have enough? What will others think of my financial decisions? Questions like these
will come from everywhere – culture, others, the enemy, and even from ourselves. We must
decide ahead of time that when we feel fearful, we will still choose to be faithful.

And when we choose to be faithful, we might also be led to ask what things God is
asking us to be faithful with. What does this really look like? First, God gives us time. How do
you spend your time? If you examine your time, what can it tell you about what you value?
Second, He gives us talents. What are you doing with the gifts and abilities God has given you?
Are you serving others with the specific giftings you have? Are you pointing back to God when
others praise you for these giftings? Third, He gives us treasure. How does your financial
management point to God?

When we are faithful with the little that He gives us, He entrusts us with more.
Faithfulness is not for the faint of heart. It demands that you recognize God as the
owner of everything you have. Once you acknowledge that, how much easier it is to be
faithful! God’s gifts to each of us in the form of time, talents, and treasure are unbelievable.
Let us thank Him for these gifts through our acts of faithfulness.

This year at Bare, we’ll be focusing on the year of faithfulness. As we provide
excellent wealth management grounded in Biblical wisdom, we have developed resources to
share with you that will help you identify and focus on key areas to grow in faithfulness. We
can’t wait to meet with you and talk about what faithfulness looks like.

The GREATEST Story Ever!

by Tina Bare

“In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world.” How many of you know what comes next? If you’ve grown up in the church, it’s likely that you’ve heard this story from Luke 2 many times! But have you stopped and considered this wonderful story from a different perspective? I thought about what the shepherds, those men that were not highly esteemed, experienced that night…

(The following perspective is a fictional depiction of the shepherds based on the Biblical account.)

We tend to our flocks each day and night. Every day it’s the same, nothing crazy, nothing new. Until last night. It was my turn to stay awake to make sure our sheep were safe. I was nodding in and out, and all of a sudden, the sky lit up! The darkness that had settled was replaced with a glow so bright I almost couldn’t look toward it. I turned to wake the others, but they were already up. Who wouldn’t be awakened by that force of light?

I looked up to the sky to see an angelic figure. What was going on? I was convinced it was a dream. Not only was I looking at this figure that I could only assume was an angel, but then it started talking to us! The angel immediately told us not to be afraid. Are you serious?? We were terrified! Before I had time to argue, the angel said that there was good news – that a Savior had been born to us – the Lord of all! The long awaited King! And he was just over the hill in Bethlehem. Before we even had time to process that, the sky was full of angels, and they were singing! They sang praises to our God, and just like that, they were gone.

Suddenly the darkness of night covered our field again. We looked around at each other, and there wasn’t a single hesitation about if we should go or not. We had to go! We had to see if this was true, because if it was, how immensely that would change our lives!

We immediately left and traveled to Bethlehem, and sure enough, we found the baby, our Savior, wrapped in cloth and lying in a manger. And oh how we were overjoyed! What an incredible gift – one we could never have imagined! We told Mary and Joseph of all that we’d experienced that night and how it led us to them. Yet we soon had to leave and tell everyone we knew! The Savior is here! Glory to God! We felt so honored and humbled by the God of the universe sending angels to tell us, as the shepherds. We aren’t necessarily highly respected in society, so what a precious moment this was, to be told of this great news.”

How fun it is to consider the Christmas story from different perspectives! And as we think about it, truly every story is like this. Even those we tell within our families are the same. Have you ever had just a slight disagreement on what really happened between you and your siblings? Each of us will connect with the Christmas story from a different perspective. The parts of the story that shape our heart may be different, but no matter which way we hear the story, it’s still the greatest story of all time.

As you think about storytelling, consider what makes stories memorable. Stories pass down knowledge, information, and wisdom. Without stories, we would not be able to learn from the triumphs nor the mistakes of others. Stories also help us remember things. When information is shared in the form of a story, people tend to remember 65-70% of what they heard. If there was no story involved, they remember only 5-10% (Klongerbo). Why? Because we relate to them and we remember how they made us feel.

Here at Bare, we believe in the significance of each of our stories. This year, we focused on the Year of Story and have tried to help you capture your story so that it can be told to the next generation. You’ve reflected on your understanding of your values, your work, generosity, contentment, and money through resources like the Beyond Abundance booklet.

As we reflect on these pieces of our own life, we’re better able to tell our own stories. The same is true as we seek to share the truth and the hope of the greatest story ever told, story of Jesus. As we take intentional time with the Lord to consider all of what it meant when he came to earth as a baby boy, we are reminded of the hope and grace offered to us so freely and graciously! This Christmas, we invite you to consider a few questions with us.

  1. Which aspect of the Christmas story is most compelling to you? What moves and shapes your heart as you listen?
  2. How has the Christmas story impacted your story?
  3. Who can you share the Christmas story with this year?

We pray that you find strength and hope in remembering Christ’s love and sacrifice toward us. Merry Christmas!

Follow us on social media to read stories of encouragement from staff and clients this Christmas season! 

Sources:

Klongerbo, Sarah. “What Does Storytelling in Marketing Mean? (Examples, Statistics & Tips).” Sarah Klongerbo, 17 May 2023, sarahklongerbo.com/blog/storytelling-in-marketing/#:~:text=Facts%20are%2022%20times%20more,remember%2065%25%20to%2070%25.

Celebrating 21 Years & A New Look For Us!

by Ron Bare

At the end of October, we held a 21-year anniversary celebration event! It was a wonderful evening with great food and friends, an encouraging challenge from Chuck Bentley and amazing musical entertainment from Voices of Lee. In addition, we looked back at the last 21 years of Bare Wealth Advisors and Ron set a great vision for where we hope to head in the coming years. We are committed to helping you have great impact and tell your story intentionally for generations to come. For those of you who were in attendance, we hope you were blessed and inspired. If you could not make it, we missed you!

At our celebration, in addition to the above, we launched a new look and feel for Bare Wealth Advisors!  As many of you know, 2021 was our “Year of Intentionality.” We felt that this was the right time to be sure that we were intentionally telling an accurate story of who we are and what we do. We worked through an in depth 6-month process being sure we did this well. We are so excited with the results! We will be sharing more of the details of our rebranding in the coming months through our blogs and social media.

When going through the rebranding process our goal was to listen and think about you and your needs or desires when working with financial professionals. We know one of your biggest desires is to make a difference, an impact – in your families and in our world through causes you support with your time, talent, and your treasure. Knowing that the busyness of life and sometime the worries of this world can get in the way of this kind of living, we are committed to forming trusted partnerships with you to help you plan intentionally and give generously to your impact areas (family and giving decisions). Ultimately, we believe, as many of you do, what we invest into the next generation and charitable causes are what will last well beyond our lifetimes.

Our focus is helping you maximize your impact (with the financial capital you are stewarding) for your family and the causes or good you wish to make on this world as part of your legacy.  We do this by providing wealth management and holistic financial planning grounded in Biblical wisdom to encourage generosity, empower vision, and influence the world for good. In the coming months we will continue to share the details of our rebranding including our NEW tagline…”Beyond Abundance.” We look forward to helping you grasp this exciting vision!

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